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1:15 AM ET, November 20, 2008

Techmeme

 Top Items: 
The Official Google Blog:
Lively no more  —  In July we launched Lively in Google Labs because we wanted users to be able to interact with their friends and express themselves online in new ways.  Google has always been supportive of this kind of experimentation because we believe it's the best way to create groundbreaking products …
RELATED:
Erick Schonfeld / TechCrunch:
Google Kills Lively  —  Even Google is getting into the downsizing spirit.  It just announced that it is killing Lively, its browser-baseed virtual worlds that could be embedded into other Websites.  Lively launched just last July.  The death notice on the site says it will shut down on December 31 …
Discussion: HipMojo.com
RELATED:
Ina Fried / Beyond Binary:
Microsoft, labels try to revive subscriptions  —  With fewer consumers than hoped for signing up for all-you-can-eat music subscriptions, Microsoft and the record industry are trying to make the option more appealing.  —  As of Wednesday, those who pay for the $14.95 a month Zune Pass subscription …
Mitchell / Mitchell's Blog:
Sustainability in Uncertain Times  —  Today we are posting our audited financial statements and tax form for 2007.  As in past years, I'll use this event as an opportunity to review both our financial status and our overall effectiveness in moving the mission forward.  —  Financial
RELATED:
Erick Schonfeld / TechCrunch:
Google Makes Up 88 Percent Of Mozilla's Revenues, Threatens Its Non-Profit Status  —  Today, the (for-now) non-profit Mozilla Foundation released its financial statements for 2007 (embedded below).  Revenues for the organization behind the open-source Firefox browser were up 12 percent to $75 million …
Jason Kincaid / TechCrunch:
SnapTell: Instant Product Lookup From The iPhone.  You Want This.  —  If you have an iPhone, you'll probably want to check out SnapTell Explorer, a free application now available on the App Store.  The premise is simple: take a photo of the cover of any CD, DVD, book, or video game …
Discussion: jkOnTheRun and metarand
Apple:
Apple TV: About Apple TV software updates  —  Products Affected  —  Apple TV  —  Refer the table below for Apple TV Software Update 2.3 features:  —  How To  —  AirTunes Streaming from Apple TV  —  Music can be streamed via AirTunes to Airport Express speakers or other Apple TVs in your house.
Ina Fried / Beyond Binary:
Ballmer: ‘We are done’ with Yahoo acquisition idea  —  Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer threw his daily bucket of cold water on the notion that the software maker will return with a new bid for all of Yahoo.  —  “We are done with all acquisition discussions with Yahoo,” Ballmer said …
RELATED:
Jim Goldman / Tech Check with Jim Goldman:
Xbox Vs. PlayStation With Netflix Caught In The Middle  —  It's a big day for Netflix with the service going live on Microsoft's Xbox 360 platform.  But there's one big thing lacking and you can thank the heated rivalry between Sony and Microsoft for it and I'm getting an earful from some of you.
RELATED:
Dave Zatz / Zatz Not Funny!:
The New Xbox Experience Is Here  —  The New Xbox Experience (NXE) has finally arrived.
Discussion: DSLreports
Signal vs. Noise:
Why the Drudge Report is one of the best designed sites on the web  —  A couple weeks ago on Twitter I said: “I still maintain the Drudge Report is one of the best designed sites on the web.  Has been for years.”  A few people agreed, but most didn't.  Some thought it was a joke.  I wasn't kidding.
Michael Arrington / TechCrunch:
First Guns N' Roses Album In 17 Years Debuts Tonight On MySpace Music  —  Chinese Democracy, the first new Guns N' Roses album since 1991, debuts tonight at 9 PM PST exclusively on MySpace Music, where fans can listen to it for free.  —  Well, actually it debuted on BitTorrent a while ago, but we're not talking about that.
RELATED:
Robert MacMillan / Reuters:
McCartney, Guns N' Roses albums to launch on MySpace
Annie Chen / Gmail Blog:
Spice up your inbox with colors and themes  —  Gmail fans have been building unofficial extensions to spice up their inboxes for a while, but up til now themes haven't been an integral part of Gmail.  We wanted to go beyond simple color customization, so out of the 30 odd themes we're launching today …
MG Siegler / VentureBeat:
SimCity for the iPhone may ruin my life (in a good way)  —  No game captured my imagination when I was growing up like SimCity.  Certainly, a part of it was my God complex, but more it was the open-ended nature of a game with few rules that let you build a city.
Discussion: Touch Arcade
Michael Arrington / TechCrunch:
Yahoo Brings Glue To U.S.: A Plethora of Aggregated Topical Third Party Content  —  Yahoo Glue, a new search results page design that the company has been testing in India, is rolling out to the US market this evening.  You can view it at glue.yahoo.com, although Yahoo says it is rolling out in stages, so sit tight if you don't see it.
IEBlog:
IE8: What's After Beta 2  —  The announcement of IE8 Beta 2 started an important and public phase of the product development cycle getting broad public feedback.  The team is providing detailed information and answering questions about the product in many different places.
Discussion: The Microsoft Blog
Kara Swisher / BoomTown:
Yahoo Search Suffers Another Blow, as Key Engineer Departs for Microsoft  —  Yahoo-which has stuck to its guns by staying in the search business, even though many think it is a losing game and should be sold off to Microsoft-has lost a key engineer in that arena to, uh-oh, Microsoft.
RELATED:
Owen Thomas / Valleywag:
Is Yahoo done with search?
Om Malik / GigaOM:
Here Come The Crunchies (Again)  —  After a very successful debut last year, The Crunchies are returning to once again celebrate the best of entrepreneurship and new startups.  With the economy being what it is, 2009 is going to be a tough year for everyone and I see events like The Crunchies …
Wilson Rothman / Gizmodo:
Windows 7 Touch Control Makes Media Center Interface Awesome  —  Windows 7 Touch Control Makes Media Center More Awesome  —  Visiting Microsoft's Media Center posse in Redmond, I just caught a glimpse of the Windows 7 Media Center interface with integrated touch control (no third-party software) on an HP TouchSmart.
Discussion: One Microsoft Way
Scott Ferguson / eWeek:
After the Layoffs: Collecting 52,000 Laptop and Desktop Computers  —  Table of Contents:  —  The announcement this week that Citigroup will eliminate 52,000 jobs and with other large companies also looking at layoffs, IT departments are going to be forced to deal with hundreds and even thousands …
Wall Street Journal:
BlackBerry's Storm Joins Touch-Phone Fray  —  To its fiercest devotees, one of the best things about the BlackBerry is its carefully designed physical keyboard, which the skilled BlackBerry addict can play like a violin.  These folks scorn Apple's popular iPhone, whose keyboard is virtual and must be operated by tapping on the screen.
Discussion: Alley Insider, Engadget and Gear Diary
Steve Lohr / Bits:
Hunting for a Brainy Computer  —  Want a really intelligent digital assistant?  —  Well, it certainly won't be ready for this holiday season, but that is the long-range goal of a $4.9 million grant from the government's Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency to five universities and I.B.M. Research.
Discussion: VentureBeat
Marcus Foster / Google Mobile Blog:
Google Sync for BlackBerry: Now with contacts  —  You asked for it, so here it is.  We're happy to announce that in the latest update to Google Sync for BlackBerry, we've added two-way contacts synchronization.  This new functionality will enable you to sync your handheld's built-in address book with your Gmail contacts.
Dan Rayburn / The Business Of Online Video:
MLB.com's Switch To Flash Video Leaves More Questions Than Answers  —  Adobe got a big customer win this week when they announced that MLB.com would move from the Silverlight platform back to Flash for all their live and on-demand video.  The two-year deal, which kicks off in 2009 …
Michael Arrington / TechCrunch:
Insidious New SEO Ad Product Will Be Hard For Google To Detect (Updated With Google Response)  —  New York-based advertising firm MediaWhiz, never one to worry about gray areas when it comes to advertising, has launched a new product today called InLinks.  —  It's fairly straightforward …
Verne Kopytoff / San Francisco Chronicle:
Online social networks, games can be good for kids  —  (11-19) 18:14 PST SAN FRANCISCO — Rather than wasting their time, children who gab on Facebook or play online games are gaining valuable social skills and learning some technology basics, according to a study released Thursday.
Electronista:
Unpaid time while Vista boots results in lawsuits  —  Certain employers are docking their employees' pay while they wait for their Vista PCs to boot up, to the tune of 30 to 60 minutes per day, resulting in class-action lawsuits being brought against the employers, says a Tuesday blog report.
Will Park / IntoMobile:
MMS coming to iPhone 3G!  —  Now, before you get all worked up in an MMS-frenzy, you should know that MMS is coming to iPhone 3G's on Telia's network.  MacWorld has confirmed that the Scandinavian wireless carrier has the distinction of offering the iPhone 3G exclusively in Apple rival Nokia's home-turf …
Discussion: CNET News
Arik Hesseldahl / Business Week:
Hewlett-Packard Out-Touches Apple  —  Apple watchers assumed Jobs & Co. would be the first to offer a multitouch laptop, but Hewlett-Packard has beaten them to the punch  —  From the first time Steve Jobs demonstrated “the pinch”—the two-finger gesture used to zoom in and out of photos …
 
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The Carlsberg Group goes ‘GloCal’ with Office 365  —  Denmark-based brewery finds the right balance between working together at a global level and allowing its many strong regional beer brands to flourish.
VMware:
How vCloud Hybrid Service is Different: 10 Cloud Capabilities on vCloud Hybrid Service that Don't Exist on AWS  —  With vCloud Hybrid Service (vCHS), we're firmly focused on solving enterprise customer cloud problems …
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 More Items: 
Agence France Presse:
Iran blocks access to over five million websites: report
Emil Protalinski / One Microsoft Way:
Canadians: Use Live Search, win a 2009 Mitsubishi Lancer SE
Discussion: The Microsoft Blog
Electronista:
Seagate intros rainbow of FreeAgent Go drives
Discussion: SlashGear and Engadget
InfoWorld:
Yahoo OneSearch coming to T-Mobile USA
Discussion: Unwired View and mocoNews.net
Dan Rayburn / The Business Of Online Video:
Akamai Cuts 7% Of Workforce, 110 Layoffs Across All Divisions Of The Company
Josh Lowensohn / Webware.com:
Searchme brings its Coverflow search to iPhone
Ryan Naraine / Zero Day:
Malware found in Lenovo software package
 Earlier Items: 
Nick O'Neill / All Facebook:
Patent Squatter Sues Facebook
Discussion: VentureBeat
InfoWorld:
Zend adds Flash links to PHP
Discussion: InformationWeek and The Register
Chris Albrecht / NewTeeVee:
Sonic Solutions to Buy CinemaNow
Discussion: Electronista and paidContent.org
Jeremy Crane / Compete Blog:
Behold the Power of google.com
Discussion: ReadWriteWeb
Zach Epstein / Boy Genius Report:
Confirmed: iPhone 3G coming to Wal-Mart on December 28th …